While 2020, was the year of the COVID Vestry, meeting through Zoom only; 2021 was more normal with COVID lurking! It has been an honor and a privilege to serve on the Vestry the past four years and as your Senior Warden the last two. On the front end I would like to thank all of the Vestry members, Fr. Brad, Fr. Lane and Deacon Sheila for your support while I served.
This past year, a loud cheer goes out to the Way Forward Committee and the Audio Visual Committee for keeping us safe and open while giving video options for those who needed. Also Dana Fritz, thank you for your leadership on Adult Formation.
2021 brought much change in the church leadership, both at St. Paul’s and in the Diocese of Milwaukee. In March Fr. Brad notified the parish that he was leaving to go back to Oregon, in April Provisional Bishop Jeffrey Lee filled the vacancy with the departure of Bishop Miller and in September St. Paul’s welcomed Fr. Lane Hensley as the Interim Rector. Followed by Deacon Sheila’s announcement in December about her plans to move back to her home country.
While I personally have missed Fr. Brad’s pastoral care, I feel blessed to have had the chance to work with Fr. Lane on St. Paul’s transition. It was imperative during this transition that St. Paul’s find an interim to help direct and evaluate the successes and shortcomings of St. Paul’s built on strength. Supported by Fr. Lane, Bishop Lee and his staff, the discernment process by our members and the search for a new rector may not be easy but can be rewarding for all.
Successes this year included: using supply priests on the front end of our transition, continued growth of St. Paul’s music program, Sunday social times after church and our community outreach. I would like to thank: Peter Larson for his work on finding Fr. Michael Cover who filled-in most of our Sundays early-on, Lee Coppernoll for keeping our Sunday coffee hours going, general engagement and communication through The Apostle and to Joe Kucharski, for the continued growth of the music program and upgrades to the organs. All of this happened in and around COVID + We should feel blessed!